Students See Beauty of Native American Culture

Article excerpt

Byline: Lori Mieling

It was the opportunity of a lifetime. Last month the Upper School students of Science and Arts Academy participated in a unique educational experience entitled "Spirit of the Land," which focused on the Native American.

Outside experts were invited to speak and student projects included aspects of Indian life: herbal medicine, the ancient Mound Builders, the horse, fur trade, etc.

In preparation for this curriculum, four teachers from the academy were honored this past summer with a study grant award from the Washington, D.C.-based Council of Education to study the culture and tradition of the Native American of the Upper Midwest.

Ron Solberg, social studies educator and one of the coordinators of the program, explains, "Science teacher Robert Kapheim and I were joined by elementary-level teachers Virginia Gregersen and Carole Inger. Dr. David Beck, scholar from the Native American Educational Services College in Chicago, met with us on a regular basis to give instruction on the variances of the culture as well as the history. Likewise, we visited with the tribal elders of the Menominee Indian Reservation (near Green Bay, Wis.). I learned a lot from being a part of the pow-wows. …